Short Stories

50 Word Thursday #36 – How many Roads?

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He travelled alone, his pack on his back,

stumbling along the dusty old track,

though he’d naught to his name,

he felt glad, all the same,

for he had some things he’d sure hate to lose,

A tune in his head and a good pair of shoes.

Promises of youth had turned traitor and fled,

Replaced by the certainty of another road to tread.

He built his fires in a thousand places

and remembered the love on a good many faces,

and slept on the banks of rivers.

wrapped in a coat to hold back his shivers,

 The grass grew over his tracks,

time took its toll leaving no time to relax,

 but he knew where they were when he came again

his memories sharp, with feelings of pain,

And though he’d travelled,  long and far,

he stopped by the roadside and took out his guitar.

And strummed, his voice clear, his face gave a frown,

and sang, “How many roads must a man walk down?”

His tenor tones rang out as he grimaced and grinned,

but found no answer at all blowing in the wind.

How many roads to forget what he saw?

How many roads?

Always one more.

[200 Words]

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 10th September 2019

 

This poem was written for the 50 Word Thursday Challenge which ends Wednesday afternoon, so you still have time to take part if you want to. Click on the link below:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/09/05/50-word-thursday-36/

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

 

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/09/10/traitor/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/09/10/rdp-tuesday-guitar/

 

 

 

 

 

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Love, Unrequited? – A humorous love poem.

I wrote this poem the other day, but I have now added a final stanza that makes it a bit happier. I wished I could say that this poem is semiautobiographical, or at least the final bit,  but I’m afraid it isn’t. 

 

Cupid pulled back his bowstring

At his target, he took aim,

He hit me in my broken heart

Now I don’t feel quite the same.

 

It’s all a bit of a puzzle,

I’m not sure I feel so neat,

I don’t seem to sleep so well at night

And I can’t bring myself to eat.

 

I’m staring at adversity,

And productive, I am not,

Cupid! Why did you do this to me?

It was a cruel malicious shot.

 

For while you shot me well and good,

And my heart is now a flutter,

You didn’t bother to make a match

My love lies in the gutter.

 

So, Cupid please, get off your knees

And have another go,

Either cure me of this love disease

Or send me my Romeo.

 

And the new bit…

Cupid, you’re a splendid bloke,

For services, you should be knighted.

Because despite my fears and anguished tears,

My love turns out to be requited.

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 21/July/2019 updated 24/July/2019

 

I have included the following word prompts:

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/rdp-sunday-puzzle/

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/target/

FOWC with Fandango — Productive

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/your-daily-word-prompt-adversity-july-21-2019/

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/24/unrequited-2/

 

In Search of Happiness – A collaborative poem by Beckie of Beckie’s Mental Mess and Kristian of Tales from the Mind of Kristian.

What is this thing called Happiness?

I search and search, but I confess

That some days of searching high and low,

it feels as if,  happiness is suppressed

No matter where I am, how far I go.

Feeling Lonely, lost and dispossessed. 

My heart, mind, body, and soul often thinks, is this a test?

I know happiness is out there, I have to believe.

but while I endlessly search without sleep or rest, 

this cruel world is ever ready to deceive. 

Though challenges are around every corner,

the search for the secret to happiness must be achieved.

Or is life just a meaningless empty space?

God’s creative vision totally misconceived?

This questioning in my mind is a disgrace,

God would never allow me to continue being this peeved.

Yet when the darkness holds me in its embrace,

I cannot but feel bitterly aggrieved. 

With gritted teeth, I become red in the face,

Am I worthy of happiness to be received?

and yet, before I fall and sink without a trace

a ray of hope lifts me, a miracle to be believed. 

This warm fuzzy feeling as if my heart is being embraced,

a feeling washes over me, I hope I’m not being teased.

As happiness emerges from a forgotten deep place

The tormenting brooding darkness is finally eased. 

God lent his hands and darkest clouds soon were erased

The sunlight poured through and the negativity soon ceased.

For now, the battle ends leaving just an aftertaste

I have fought off once again that dark depressive beast. 

There is light at this terribly long tunnel, and so I race

my longing for happiness, my running towards it increased.

I discover, at last, that life is a mad steeplechase

and this thing called happiness is like a strange feast. 

 

Beckie and I have been passing this poem backwards and forwards taking it in turns to write additional lines. I think it has worked out really well. Many of you may have followed the process all along, but it is nice to have it all together in one place.

I am so proud of this poem that Beckie and I have created, we worked really well together and made a great team.

I hope you like this poem.

 

Finish the Story #11 – The Recruit.

I have been tagged by Teresa, The Haunted Wordsmith in one of her brilliant Finish the Story Challenges! I do really enjoy these, you never know where the story will end up taking you.

Click on the link below to see her original post:

https://thehauntedwordsmith.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/finish-the-story-2019-11/

The Rules:

  1. post the story as you receive it
  2. add to the story (or finish it, up to the writer)
  3. tag another person to continue the story (unless you finished it)
  4. Have fun!

Part One – by The Haunted Wordsmith

Adam was like any other eighteen-year-old boy and soon found himself standing in the middle of the training bay being subjected to the drill instructor’s ridicule. It wasn’t his fault the quarter didn’t flip on the old mattress, but he accepted his punishment anyway. He didn’t have another choice.

Ever since the revolution began, more and more troops were needed. There were even whispered rumors of lowering the age to thirteen if you were from a poor family. The government paid dearly for your life. That money could help support the family.

After completing fifty push-ups and parading around the bay in his underwear, Adam and the other recruits headed outside for training. The morning was dedicated to basic weapons and enemy language skills. Many of the recruits were already fluent, but the training was the same. Adam excelled and only realized his mistake when he was called into the Commander’s office that afternoon.

“Take a seat,” Commander Flint said, pointing toward a chair in the corner of the room.

Adam did as he was told and caught his breath as two governmental agents entered Flint’s office. One look from them and Adam knew he was in danger.

“That him?”

“That is Private Adam Ripple, yes.”

“Come with us,” an agent ordered, flashing his sidearm and a warning glance.

Adam stood. “What is this all about?”

The agents stared at him. The one nearest him replied, “…….

Part Two – My Contribution

“You’re a bit of an anomaly, you know?”

Adam couldn’t help feeling a bit cynical. He knew he wasn’t anything special. He was just a kid from the wrong side of the tracks, sent into the army to get him off the streets and to help fight this war that many now felt was unwinnable.

“Me? Apart from an ability to get myself into trouble, I can’t see what makes me any different from any other shmo around here. I’m pretty ordinary.” Adam laughed nervously.

One of the agents bent down and pushed the dark glasses down his nose, fixing Adam with an Icy blue stare. “There’s many a true word spoken in jest, lad. Two things mark you out. Your ability with languages which is by far the best we’ve seen in some time, and the fact that you could blend in anywhere. You’ve finished at this prestigious military academy” he paused to glance out of the window at the makeshift camp, to emphasise the sarcasm in his words. “You graduate as of today. Tomorrow you’re going underground.”

The agents grabbed an arm each and practically dragged him out of the commander’s office and into the back of a black van.

Before he knew it he was……

End of part two.

 

Now, who shall I consider for the next part? Who enjoys this sort of challenge?

I think I will nominate Li of Tao Talk.

Anomaly

 

Have fun 🙂

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/rdp-friday-graduate/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/your-daily-word-prompt-cynical-may-17-2019/

FOWC with Fandango — Anomaly

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/jest/

 

 

 

Harmful Ignorance – A poem

Fantasy

He gazed upon a sight so great,

this Citadel made to fascinate,

if he lingers longer he’ll be late,

and that would never do.

 

He wore the robes so thick, so warm,

they were his apprentice’s uniform,

And kept out the cold and winter storm,

that he had struggled through.

 

His quest was nearly at an end,

to reach the city and find his friend,

to finish his training and then defend

his home from what he knew.

 

In his ignorance he’d released

A dark creature, an evil beast,

upon the living, it will feast.

It was all his fault, it’s true.

 

He must become a mighty Mage,

a Sorcerer skilled with wisdom sage,

and face this creatures dreadful rage.

to defeat and then undo,

the harm that only ignorance can do.

 

This was written for the What do you See? challenge:

What do you See? Feb/26/2019

 

I have included the following word prompts:

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/02/26/rdp-tuesday-fault/

FOWC with Fandango — Uniform

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/02/26/your-daily-word-prompt-fascinate-february-26-2019/

 

 

 

 

 

Manic Mondays 3-Way Challenge – So Hungry are the Damned – A Dark Poem

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This poem was written in response to Laura M Bailey’s challenge. See Link:

https://alltheshoesiwear.wordpress.com/2018/10/01/manic-mondays-3-way-prompt-damned/

You may also wish to read my previous 3-way challenge story because this one follows it:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2018/09/24/manic-mondays-3-way-challenge-personal-scars-a-story-in-less-than-100-words/

 

So Hungry Are the Damned

 

He lured her to his lair

in that dark, secluded glade,

without fear, without a care

she danced to the tune he played.

 

He admired her tender form

so lovely, so full of grace.

Her body, soft and warm, 

then he slowly turned her face.

 

he bit into her neck,

to harvest her blood, so hot.

The red stains now bedeck

where diamonds soon forgot. 

 

Now she’ll join him as his queen,

in his realm, that darkest land, 

Envy not, those fiends, unclean,

so hungry are the damned

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 01/October/2018

 

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2018/10/01/glade/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2018/10/01/your-daily-word-prompt-harvest-october-1-2018/

 

 

 

 

Everything Stops for Tea – Murder Mystery Grand Finale

I started writing a murder mystery some time ago, This is the final chapter.

If you’d like to read this story from the beginning, click on this link:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2018/07/11/the-start-of-it-a-short-story-with-familiar-characters/

Everything Stops for Tea

She had only taken one sip of the tea when the doorbell rang yet again. It was an impudent ring and it didn’t surprise her at all when Alice opened the door and her great-nephew bounded in.

“Afternoon Auntie, I got your note” Charles beamed at her then looked around at the gathered assembly. “What’s this all about Aunt Audrey? Did you want to make up a four for Bridge? That’s not really my game, more of a Cribbage man myself.”

“Just be quiet Charles and sit over there” Audrey pointed at a vacant chair next to Lord Halifax.

Audrey stood up and cleared her throat.

I have asked you all here to discuss the unfortunate deaths of Elsie Taplow and Claudia Halifax.

Audrey couldn’t complain she hadn’t received due attention. Several pairs of eyes were locked on her.

“Why didn’t you tell me you were going to do this?” Sir Alfred was clearly taken off guard “We were supposed to be working together.”

Standing at her full height, Audrey’s blue eyes flashed, she had never looked more alive.

“I couldn’t trust you fully. You could have very well been the killer. You came to call on me very early on that morning when poor Elsie’s body was found. You could have just come from killing her. I’ve seen it before, an old policeman, feeling obsolete and no longer useful. They go off the rails a bit. They want to make themselves important again, make themselves relevant. So why not create a murder to make them more relevant?”

Sir Alfred looked quite pale as he sat there looking up at Audrey.

Continue reading Everything Stops for Tea – Murder Mystery Grand Finale

Sunday Afternoon Reading – My Fantasy Story Part 23.

I was posting instalments of the Fantasy story I wrote 17 years ago every Sunday and Wednesday afternoons. The most observant amongst you may have realised that I haven’t posted an instalment in some time. In fact, the last one was posted last Friday, the 17th of August.

Well here is the next part. I hope you are enjoying it.

If you want to read it from its genesis, here is the link:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2018/05/26/a-fantasy-tale-part-one/

 

Part Twenty-Three

Piotr Drake had not been enjoying himself. No, not at all. He was not in the best of moods. He had been travelling on the road for several days, since leaving the City of Savarias, on horse back and dressed up like a Mage. This had presented a couple of problems for Piotr. Firstly, that despite being a coachman he was not at all a good horse rider. He was fine with horses when he was sitting up high and they were harnessed to the coach and he had the reins and his whip. He found sitting on them quite unbearable. Truth be known he was not at all fond of horses. Riding them, he felt that the horse was more in control of the situation than he was. It took all his strength and stamina to keep the horse from straying from the road to have a munch of some tempting thicket. The way Piotr gripped his reins you would have thought he was riding a fierce stallion. Actually the horse was a particularly docile example and had been christened by its original owner, ‘Plodder’.

Continue reading Sunday Afternoon Reading – My Fantasy Story Part 23.

The Wind Sheds No Tears – Part Five

This is a part of a longer story that I have been writing over the last few weeks. 

See here for the last part of the story, which also contains links to all the others, if you want to read more:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2018/04/19/the-wind-sheds-no-tears-part-four/

Part Five

The next day Pablo woke early. The sun was just coming up over the horizon, its light slowly ebbing into the dark night sky, hiding all its stars and turning it blue and getting brighter and brighter towards the east.

He put a small pack together, a change of clothes and a few simple belongings, he didn’t own much. He also put on the silver St Christopher charm necklace that his mother had given him. He didn’t usually wear it as the memories of his mother filled him with that longing for her touch that would never come. It was a charm to protect travellers and he was going with his Uncle Carlos to the City of Valencia. Likely, he would need its protection now.

Continue reading The Wind Sheds No Tears – Part Five

A new collaboration with Beckie of Beckie’s Mental Mess – Halloween Special

selective focus photo of cemetery lantern
Photo by Micael Widell on Pexels.com

I have collaborated with Beckie of Beckie’s Mental Mess on two poems so far:

  1. In Search of Happiness:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/in-search-of-happiness-a-collaborative-poem-by-beckie-of-beckies-mental-mess-and-kristian-of-tales-from-the-mind-of-kristian/

and

2. The Creation (about the Creative writing process)

A Collaboration By Beckie of “Beckie’s Mental Mess” and Kristian of “Tales From The Mind of Kristian” ~ The Creation ~ The Final Piece

3. On Travelling:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/09/03/timetravel-the-final-poem-a-collaboration-between-beckie-of-beckies-mental-mess-and-talesfromthemindofkristian/

 

This one is about Halloween.

 

It seemed like such a playful lark, 

to sleep in the graveyard, after dark……

 

Beckie’s bit:

Though second guesses and question-marks

played inside my mind, I heard a mean dog bark.

 

My response:

This had all be done for a wicked bet,

I saw no harm at first, and yet…

 

Beckie’s response:
Surrounded by death, what could be a threat?
However, I was anxious and began to fret.

 

My bit:

I regretted it already, in perfect hindsight,

after all, it was eerily dark that Halloween night. 

 

Beckie’s Part:

I brought my lantern for a little bit of light,

unfortunately for me, the light played tricks with my sight.

 

My response:

Did I see, in the shadows, a skeletal hand?

And other tormented shapes, I could scarcely understand. 

 

Beckie’s bit:

With little light, my eyes squinted as I scanned,

tombstones and mausoleums that tip, and could barely stand.

 

and from me:

And then as the ancient clock struck the witching hour

the wind blew cold and the earthly scents turned sour. 

 

Beckie’s Bit:

The ground began to shake, with such force and power,

gravestones cracked knocking over the vases of flowers.

 

My Bit:

I let out a scream, feeling full of fear and dread,

as from their broken granite graves rose up the dead.

 

Beckie’s Bit:

What started as a playful lark, I was riddled with fear instead,

Mausoleum doors screeched open, a body appeared with no head.

 

My Bit:

An eerie light descended looking greenish in the fog, 

Then a piercing, ghoulish howl, was it a banshee or just a dog?

 

Beckie’s Bit:

Sounds of the ghoulish howling grew closer, I hid behind a log,

as the scent of rotten eggs drifted through the thick smog.

 

My addition:

And cowering from my hiding place, I took a glimpse and saw, 

A thousand zombie bodies gathered armed, as if for war. 

 

Beckie’s Bit:

How were they to gnaw,  if they had been missing a jaw?

Thoughts raced, the fear shook me to my very core.

 

My Bit:

As I huddled down in shadows and held my living breath, 

I could see the guts and gory corpses and smell the scent of death. 

Over to you Beckie, hope you enjoy this one 😉

A new collaboration with Beckie of Beckie’s Mental Mess and Kristian of Tales From The Mind of Kristian– Halloween Special

 

 

 

 

 

 

Careful

The Word of the Day is Careful,

I hope this word inspires you to write a story or a poem 🙂

Word of the Day Challenge

blur-book-book-pages-880776

Today’s Word of the Day is Careful.

If you want to participate, create a pingback to link your post. Not sure how to do that? See how to create pingbacks here. Please note that for the prompts that I publish, the comment box will now remain open for people who experience trouble with pingbacks. However, I won’t guarantee a quick response to actual comments, that would be left here. If you have questions, or ideas you’d like to submit, please use our “contact” page.

.

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50 Word Thursday #41 – Memories of Venice

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And the words:

“How could I forget?” Mrs Judkin’s said.   – Otherwise Engaged – Amanda Quick

 

They stood together on the bridge in Venice watching the traffic of boats and gondola navigate the grand canal.

It had been many years since their divorce and here they were face to face again. Venice held happy memories of times together on their honeymoon.

He looked at her, just as he had when they were young, a longing in his clear blue eyes. Gone was his brown hair, the man was no longer the slim guy she had once loved. She too had changed. She still had blonde hair, but that came out of a bottle now. She wasn’t quite as lithe and laughter lines and crow’s feet bedecked her face.

They laughed about old times.

“Did you marry again, after?” he asked nervously.

“Yes, I’m Mrs Judkins now” she replied.

“Oh, is your husband with you?” he responded, cautiously.

“No, he died two years ago.”

“You know, I never stopped loving you?” he said boldly.

“Really?” she said, moving closer.

“I can’t justify what I did, the affair I mean. You remember what happened?”

She smiled, in a winsome manner, then pushed him over the stone railing into the canal below.

“How could I forget?” Mrs Judkins said.

[200 Words]

 

This story was written for the 50 Word Thursday challenge which this week is hosted by Deb Whittam. Click below if you would like to take part, it’s not too late:

https://debbiewhittam.wordpress.com/2019/10/11/50-word-thursday-41/

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

FOWC with Fandango — Manner

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/10/15/justify/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/10/15/rdp-tuesday-winsome/

 

Twittering Tales – Among Us.

astronomical-observatory-4520900_1280

Photo by noelsch at Pixabay.com

 

It was the largest telescope, built to find extra-terrestrial life.

A waste of money, in my humble opinion.

Why bother trying to find aliens, when they’d already found us?

They were already walking shoulder to shoulder among us, their kindred had infiltrated the White House.

[275 Characters]

 

This story was written for Kat Myrman’s Twittering Tales Challenge:

Twittering Tales #157 – 8 October 2019

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/10/14/kindred/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/10/14/rdp-monday-humble/

FOWC with Fandango — Shoulder

 

Kira’s Sunday Scribbles

The Latest amazing drawing from Kira’s Sunday Scribbles is out.
Let this picture inspire you to write a story of a poem.

Word of the Day Challenge

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Welcome to Kira’s weekly inspirational art piece.

Let the whole picture tell you a story, or dive into the small intricate details to make one up! Write a poem, a fiction piece or come up with a picture or drawing of your own, that you feel relates to it.

Feel free to copy Kira’s drawing, to add it to your own post!

Anything goes, there are no rules. But don’t forget to link us to your post with a pingback. Not sure how to do that? See how to create pingbacks here.

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Death

The Word of the Day on this Sunday the 13th of October is DEATH!

I hope this word inspires you to write a story or a poem.

Happy Sunday 🙂

Word of the Day Challenge

blur-book-book-pages-880776

Today’s Word of the Day is Death.

If you want to participate, create a pingback to link your post. Not sure how to do that? See how to create pingbacks here. Please note that for the prompts that I publish, the comment box will now remain open for people who experience trouble with pingbacks. However, I won’t guarantee a quick response to actual comments, that would be left here. If you have questions, or ideas you’d like to submit, please use our “contact” page.

.

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Terrible Poetry Contest -Little Bo Peep, Unemployed.

selective focus beige and brown goat
Photo by Sơn Bờm on Pexels.com

This poem was written for Chelsea Owens Terrible Poetry Contest, see the link below:

The Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest

 

Little Bo Peep – Unemployed.

 

Little Bo Peep

Had lost her sheep,

But she knew just where to find them

They’d been taken away

The other day

For slaughter, so she no longer had to mind them.

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 13/October/2019

FORTUNE

The Word of the Day is Fortune,

On this wet and rainy Saturday, I hope this word inspires you to write a story or a poem.

After all, if Plants had hopes and dreams they’d pray for rain. 🙂

Word of the Day Challenge

The Word of the Day is Fortune

Write a Poem, story or anecdote, inspired by this word.

Please create a pingback to your post by including a link to this page in whatever you are posting.

If you want to participate create a pingback to link your post. Not sure how to do that? See how to create pingbacks here.

https://en.support.wordpress.com/comments/pingbacks/

Most Importantly, Have Fun.

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